“ The disruption in international supply chains last year forced companies to rethink their international manufacturing processes and the purchasing of important components. While supply chain restructuring will take time, we believe it could result in additional investments in the US and Europe. In addition, the cost benefits of outsourcing to emerging markets decrease every year. Additional investments in on-site production facilities will more frequently flow into robotics and automation, which we believe will benefit this topic. ”
2. Investments to support e-commerce
“Online trading volumes increased significantly during the lockdowns. Companies with a strong internet presence have benefited from this, while companies that are not that far advanced in terms of digitization have suffered. Part of this current shift to e-commerce is temporary, but we believe that some buying habits will change permanently. We expect high investments in logistics and fulfillment centers to promote online business because many companies still have some catching up to do here. This increase in investments should benefit numerous automation suppliers (such as robotics suppliers, sensor manufacturers or image processing specialists). “
3. Rapid spread of e-mobility
“Consumer interest in electric vehicles is starting to increase noticeably. Prices are falling, battery technology is getting better, and green mobility solutions are taking center stage. What is less well known, however, is that large investments are required to manufacture these new electric cars and their batteries. It is important that investments are currently being considered that affect vehicles that will only be produced in 12 to 24 months.
The refore, the prospects for relevant suppliers, for example of industrial robots, laser technology and image processing systems, should improve. ”
4. New opportunities through 5G
“More and more 5G-capable mobile phones are coming onto the market worldwide. This benefits providers of automation components that are required for their production and manufacturers of semiconductors that are built into 5G devices. Consumer electronics producers are the second largest consumer of industrial robots alongside automobile manufacturers. In the future, the widespread use of 5G connectivity and communication will improve, which we believe will drive the development of smart and automated factories and Internet-enabled vehicles. ”
The se include food processing (less risk of contamination, better quality control and less waste) and healthcare with digital medical care and robot-assisted operating rooms. So far, operations around the world are still relatively rarely performed by robots, most of them in the USA. We therefore expect this technology to become more widespread all over the world in the next few years. ”
Tom Riley, Robotech Strategy Portfolio Manager at AXA Investment Managers
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